Jeff Ferland ’86

July 10, 2023

Jeff Ferland grew up in St. Johnsbury, attending the elementary and middle schools in town before joining SJA. During his time at the Academy, Jeff recalls forming a special bond with Paul Chouinard ‘63, former history faculty, who left a lasting impression on him. Jeff said, “Mr. Chouinard’s passion poured into each lesson. As excited as he was to share his knowledge within the classroom, I was able to witness his appreciation of American history firsthand as he chaperoned Close Up, the trip to explore Washington, DC.”


In addition to SJA/Lyndon football games themselves, Jeff also expressed fond memories for the energy of homecoming weekend, the pep rally, and the bonfire. These events created “a sense of pride and unity heading into the big game.”


After graduating in 1986, Jeff went on to study at Lyndon State College, now Northern Vermont University, and pursued a Bachelor of Science in business. Jeff felt well prepared for college after the Academy. He said, “To be part of a prestigious institution that is continually ranked one of the best high schools in the nation was truly an honor. Students from countries across the globe converge in our community providing us with a snapshot of cultures and traditions we otherwise may never be able to access. How fortunate that St. Johnsbury Academy students are provided opportunities to learn alongside and build long-lasting relationships with peers from far beyond our own region. While the curriculum was commendable, the interactions and interpersonal relationships developed during my four years at St. Johnsbury Academy prepared me for life experiences outside of the classroom.”


During an internship his senior year at LSC, Jeff found his true passion in design. This passion took him to Burlington, Vermont, and later Boston, Massachusetts, where he pursued a career in professional design and creative work. Jeff’s proudest achievement was redesigning the Schweppes beverage brand. He said, “In order to bring this brand to life, I had to immerse myself in the history of Schweppes. Jacob Schweppe created this brand in the late 1700s by developing mineralized water and the carbonation process which later led to flavoring those waters. Schweppes was among the featured guests at The Great Exhibition of 1851, which was held at the Crystal Palace in Hyde Park, London, and attracted more than six million visitors. The event was paramount in introducing this newly developed product to consumers from around the world. My inspiration for the redesign was inspired by the iconic water fountains found on the grounds of Crystal Palace. This imagery tied the design back to its roots, allowing me to modernize the look and feel, while keeping the integrity of its sophistication. The packaging you see in stores today is a simple design featuring a fountain with the iconic Schweppes logo, and one I am most proud of.”


Currently, Jeff lives in Essex Junction, Vermont, with his partner, Ryan, and daughter, Avery. He works as an associate design director for Keurig Dr. Pepper and said, “This job allows me to work on notable beverage brands that may be sitting in your pantry or on your countertops and provides countless opportunities to collaborate with top marketers in the industry.”


Jeff has this advice for current students at the Academy: “From the classroom to extracurricular activities, St. Johnsbury Academy provides students with a window to the world. Seek opportunities, explore, and try new things. Don’t be afraid to take risks.”


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